The recent World Snooker Championship garnered significant attention from TV and online audiences, according to the World Snooker Tour.
The final match between Luca Brecel and Mark Selby attracted a massive TV audience of 3.6 million viewers on BBC Two on Monday night.
Brecel, hailing from Belgium, made history as the first player from mainland Europe to triumph at the Crucible. He joined the exclusive group of non-UK players, which includes Canada’s Cliff Thorburn, Ireland’s Ken Doherty, and Australia’s Neil Robertson.
The thrilling contest featured Selby achieving the first-ever 147 break during a world final and culminated in an exhilarating finish in Sheffield.
Selby rallied from a 16-10 deficit, winning five consecutive frames to narrow the margin to just one. However, Brecel demonstrated nerves of steel, winning the last two frames, including a stylish century break.
While the final’s TV viewership fell short of the peak audience of 4.5 million who watched Ronnie O’Sullivan claim his seventh world title in 2022, the event as a whole enjoyed substantial TV coverage. Over the 17-day championship, it reached a total TV audience of 13.3 million on the BBC, with an average of 599,000 viewers.
The 2023 championship also made history on BBC online platforms, with a record-breaking 23.3 million streams, surpassing the previous record of 22.5 million set in 2022.
In the UK, Warner Bros. Discovery witnessed strong performance across its direct-to-consumer products compared to 2022. Eurosport and discovery+ streaming platforms saw a notable 7% increase in video views and a significant 37% rise in minutes streamed throughout the tournament.
Belgium’s audience was particularly engaged, with Eurosport attracting its highest viewership ever achieved in the country, marking a remarkable 177% average increase compared to 2022.
Steve Dawson, Chairman of the World Snooker Tour, expressed enthusiasm about the outstanding viewership figures and commended the BBC and Eurosport for their exceptional coverage of the championship. He also highlighted Brecel’s remarkable performance, emphasizing that a talented young champion from Europe playing in a flamboyant style will undoubtedly inspire new fans and players.
To read more about Luca Brecel’s brilliant victory in the World Snooker Championship, click here.